Tibo execution should be postponed, says former president

Posted in Religion and Politics , Other | 21-Sep-06 | Source: ANTARA News

Semarang (ANTARA News) - Former President Abdurrahman Wahid (Gus Dur) said here Thursday the planned execution of the three Poso death-row convicts, Fabianus Tibo, Marianus Riwu and Dominggus da Silva, should be postponed.

"Executions are against the Muslim religion. In the `hadist` (traditional collection of stories recouting words or deeds of the Prophet Muhammad), it is said an execution should not be carried out if the prosecution hesitates to do so," Gus Dur said here on Thursday.

The former chairman of the Nahdlatul Ulama Central Executive Board (PBNU) claimed he had several times tried to get the execution of Tibo et al postponed but to no avail.

"I called Attorney General Abdul Rahman Saleh and asked him to postpone the execution but he insisted on carrying it out as he has no knowledge about religious teachings," Gus Dur said.

The three men from Ende, East Nusa Tenggara province, who are on death row for leading a mob in sectarian violence in Central Sulawesi province are to be executed on Thursday night.

Fabianus Tibo, Marianus Riwu and Dominggus Silva will face a firing squad just after midnight on Thursday at a secret location in the Central Sulawesi provincial capital of Palu.

A series of appeals from the three have been rejected by courts at all levels, twice by the Supreme Court, since they first received the death sentences in 2001.

Last year, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono rejected their petition for a pardon.

Executions in Indonesia are carried out by firing squad and the time and location are kept secret with notification limited to next of kin.

However, Central Sulawesi Christian Church (GKST) Synod chairman Rev. Rinaldy Damanik said in Palu on Thursday the families of the trio had yet to receive official information about the imminent execution.

Damanik claimed he had just contacted Tibo`s eldest son, Robertus Tibo, but the latter said he had not received any information.

He added the execution of Tibo et all would be illegal if it was carried out as scheduled without any advance notice to their families.

Meanwhile, Robert Bala Keitimu, one of the trio`s lowyers from the Indonesian Justice and Peace Advocacy Service (Padma),
said in Batam on Wednesday that the families had so far not received any official information on the date of the execution from the Palu District Court.

"We knew from the media that Tibo and his friends are to be executed but have so far not received any official information from the Palu District Court," Robert said.(*)